GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms Unveils Proficy® Workflow for SmartGrid - Managing Work Processes and Actions for Efficient, Safer, Reliable Power Delivery


Work Process Management software solution enables better power utility demand response, automatic recovery scenarios and improved “pre-warning” systems

 

Charlottesville, VA, September 30, 2009    GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a unit of GE Enterprise Solutions, today announced its breakthrough work process management software enabled for use by utilities for SmartGrid solutions. With Proficy® Workflow, utilities can digitize and orchestrate work processes to achieve coordinated, efficient and reliable power delivery. Proficy Workflow, in conjunction with a Service Oriented Architecture such as Proficy SOA, can orchestrate processes across systems and people, triggering automatic and manual actions based on real-time events – which support the three key SmartGrid functions of Delivery Optimization, Demand Optimization and Asset Optimization.
 
“Every utility contains a mix of automated and manual interactions between equipment and personnel,” said Greg Millinger, Product General Manager for Proficy Workflow and Proficy SOA for GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms. “Often, these processes are not fully documented and include extra steps and resources. As such, they are difficult to adapt to changing needs, which challenges the industry in the journey toward the SmartGrid. Additionally, as workforces age and retire, utilities are losing the knowledge that is gained from years of experience – as the information has not been captured electronically and put into formal processes.”
 
To help avoid potential failures in the grid, Proficy Workflow can provide better response, automatic recovery scenarios and improved “pre-warning” systems of potential distribution problems.
The system guides operators through step-by-step instructions to ensure actions comply with defined processes – with validated entry. Users can capture both automated and manual data entry, and digitize and enforce compliance with policy manuals and Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). In addition, teams can react immediately to alarms and process exceptions with best practice corrective action and exception management. Utilities can automatically and dynamically respond to process problems and events, monitoring alarms and out-of-spec conditions from multiple systems. Proficy Workflow can send tasks to people or systems to correct for problems in real time and escalate as needed. Utilities can minimize nuisance alarms and take proper action on critical alarms.
 Proficy Workflow also helps with the employee attrition facing utilities and loss of expert knowledge and processes. With Proficy Workflow, utilities can implement Troubleshooting Trees to walk people through potential problems to determine root cause and solution, therefore increasing uptime and reliability. Troubleshooting Trees can help with repair of equipment as well as in-process coordination. In addition, utilities can capture the knowledge base of expert workers due to retire, reducing effects of attrition. Proficy Workflow allows utilities to provide new operators with instructionally sound training and the ability to practice operations tasks and SOPs before actually operating equipment.
Proficy Workflow can orchestrate the exchange of real-time data across the existing utility systems software and hardware infrastructure including HMI/SCADA. The solution decreases costs associated with low-level systems integration and reduces downtime by simplifying data orchestration. For example, seamless integration of information from a SCADA system on top of a wind farm into a SCADA system of a larger utility may help determine short-term generation capacity while the transformer temperature profile can concurrently be leveraged by the maintenance management system.
 
“With Proficy Workflow, utilities can improve response to real-time events – as an example, taking an automatic corrective action to overcome a cascading failure or automatically reducing loads over time, ” said Millinger. “Operations experts have the opportunity to quickly create, deploy and modify work processes for greater agility and improved performance – without requiring IT resources or support – to make every operator an expert.." GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a joint venture between General Electric Company (NYSE: GE) and FANUC LTD of Japan, is an experienced high-performance technology company and a global provider of hardware, software, services, and expertise in automation and embedded computing. We offer a unique foundation of agile, advanced and ultra-reliable technology that provides customers a sustainable advantage in the industries they serve, including energy, water, consumer packaged goods, government & defense, and telecommunications. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms is a worldwide company headquartered in Charlottesville, VA and is part of GE Enterprise Solutions. For more information, visit www.gefanuc.com.
About GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms
GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms, a joint venture between General Electric Company (NYSE: GE) and FANUC LTD of Japan, is an experienced high-performance technology company and a global provider of hardware, software, services, and expertise in automation and embedded computing. We offer a unique foundation of agile, advanced and ultra-reliable technology that provides customers a sustainable advantage in the industries they serve, including energy, water, consumer packaged goods, government & defense, and telecommunications. GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms is a worldwide company headquartered in Charlottesville, VA and is part of GE Enterprise Solutions. For more information, visit www.gefanuc.com.
About GE Enterprise Solutions
 
GE Enterprise Solutions elevates customers' productivity and profitability with integrated solutions using sensors and non-destructive testing; security and life safety technologies; power system protection and control; and plant automation and embedded computing systems. Enterprise Solutions' high-tech, high-growth businesses include Sensing & Inspection Technologies, Security, Digital Energy, and GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms. The business has 17,000 problem-solving employees in more than 60 countries around the world.
 
Media Contact:
Elli Holman, GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms
508-698-7456; elli.holman@ge.com
 
Proficy is a registered trademark of GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.